Kathy Hooper

What goes on in my head and lands up on paper

Frazee Gallery, November 2 – December 21, 2018

Artist’s Statement

I grew up on a small farm in South Africa. It was beautiful and because it was so far away from a town my sister and I could not be sent to school. We both read from a very early age and there were always books about so that part of our ‘education’ was done, but the best part was our complete freedom each day to explore anything we wanted from building unsteady canoes to looking after sick chickens. Like all children we sucked our lives in and for me those early images and emotions became the basis for the person I have become.

The sadness of the beautiful country with its harsh laws for black Africans, the separateness both of us felt from other children, the rides we took on our crazy mules, the elaborate games we played, the beauty of my mother’s garden, watching the band of baboons who lived on the mountain which rose up from the bottom of our big field. All these memories have informed me and my work, I am forever grateful for them.


Kathy Hooper, painter, printmaker, sculptor and ceramicist, was the 1994 recipient of the Strathbutler Award for Excellence in the Visual Arts & Craft in New Brunswick. In 2008 she was awarded the Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Arts. She has also been the recipient of a number of Arts grants both from the Province of New Brunswick and the Canada Council. Born in Africa, she studied in England and in South Africa before coming to Canada in the early 1960’s. She has an impressive exhibition history and an equally impressive record of acting on behalf of artists on boards and juries.

Some of her exhibitions include: Invisible Worlds a three person show at the Beaverbrook Art Gallery with Suzanne Hill and Toby Graser ,The Dog Series which grew out of a visit to Mexico, The Dark Series, which dealt with the racial turmoil of South Africa, The Marginalia at the Beaverbrook Art Gallery, Fredericton and A Series on Violence at Gallery Connexion, Fredericton. Kathy’s work was also  included in an exhibition that travelled across Canada and the United States featuring the first five recipients of the Strathbutler Award. In 1993 she was the curator for Suzanne Hill’s Carapace Series.

Kathy served on the Premier’s Advisory Committee on the Arts from 1986-89, which proposed the formation of an Arts Board, and was an Arts Board member from 1990-91. Kathy has also served on the Advisory Board of the Canada Council Art Bank and on various juries both national and provincial. Her works are to be found in public and private collections in Canada and beyond.